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Sketching out on your own…

As we are taking the week off Saturday 29th May 2020 – from the Zoom, we thought we would give you some suggestions on what you could do on Saturday morning in this glorious weather…
GETTING READY
Choose a walk that you do often – one that starts from your home or very near to it.
You’ll need a little bag (or a big pocket) and a drawing book if you have one, or otherwise paper and something to lean on.
You can take a folding stool if you have one, and if you want or need to use it.
Drawing materials of your choice –  I suggest dry materials like pens, felt-tip pens, pencils and maybe coloured pencils, crayons, charcoal or pastels.
Print out or save on your phone (or quickly jot down) the suggestions that I have made below in bulltet points for drawing approaches – so that you can take them with you.
You also need a mobile phone, watch, or stopwatch –  to use as a timer.
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MINDFULNESS
Start by taking a moment to do a relaxation and mindfulness exercise as or before you leave.
Breathe deeply.
Close your eyes and pay attention to the sounds around you and the air around you.
Pay attention to your body – especially to your hands, your arms, your eyes.
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WALK – DRAW – WALK – DRAW
Now set your timer for one minute.
You are going to walk for a short time, and then draw, then walk, then draw, and so on.
(Its important to set the timer so that you don’t spend lots of time choosing what to draw. The idea is that when your timer tells you to stop, you stop. Then draw and record the things that you see. Think of this as making a kind of visual diary of your walk.)
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1 MINUTE DRAWINGS
You can start by warming up with 5 very quick drawings –  after walking for no more than 1 minute, and then no more than one minute drawing. You can do these on the same piece of paper, one on top of the other.
Decide on an approach before you start each drawing.
You can use some of the exercises that Roz has been doing with us over the last few weeks:
  • drawing with a continuous line without looking at the paper
  • drawing with your other hand
  • using a paler colour, drawing only the shapes of ‘negative spaces’ (for example the shape of the sky as it meets the tops of buildings and the trees)
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5 MINUTE DRAWINGS
Continue your walk. Stop and make a drawing every 5 minutes. These drawings should take 5 minutes.You can do as many as you like, but at least 4!
(You can adapt this method and do the drawings much more often if your walk is a very short one – I have done this kind of exploration in my very short garden, and made a drawing every 5  paces).
As before, decide on an approach before you start drawing.
You could try any mixture of these suggestions:
  • A negative spaces drawing – drawing the  areas between and around objects, and drawing and blocking in those shapes.
  • A magnified drawing of a tiny detail of what is around you: for example, a leaf, a corner of a brick, a piece of litter, a bit of tree bark.
  • A drawing that is looking through something – from one space into another: for example, a gate, a bridge, a doorway, through trees to open space, an alleyway.
  • A drawing of a boundary: for example,  where water meets land, where a road is edged or where it cuts through another kind of space, a junction, the place where something human-made meets something natural, a bridge, a bank, a fence, a wall.
  • A drawing with words: try writing down on your drawing the things that you hear or feel or remember, the names of the colours that you are seeing, the words that you see written on your walk.
  • A drawing following contours and lines (a continous line drawing) without looking at your paper.
  • A coloured drawing that is in more than one layer. So – draw the landscape in one colour pen  for 1 and a half minutes, then turn your body a quarter turn, and draw it again in another colour on top, and repeat, and repeat.
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KEEP A RECORD
Don’t forget to keep your drawings  – and send some images in to our email for the website if you can!
And don’t forget to use your mobile phone or camera if you have one to keep extra records of what you encounter – photos, sound recordings, videos.
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WE HOPE YOU ENJOY YOUR EXPEDITION!!!

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